Colin’s surprise birthday party!


Colin and Ali in DartmouthWell not much chance of Flaming June eh?! I've had my central heating on for the last four days and even toyed with the idea of lighting the log burner on Sunday! 

Thanks for all your lovely comments, and I am glad you enjoyed the blog and the pictures of the wedding – some lovely memories. Having stayed over with Jenny after the big day, we piled everything back into the car after lunch and headed home.

Well home is where Colin thought we were going, but unbeknown to him, there were 70 of his relatives and friends waiting at a local hostelry to sing Happy Birthday! I had duped him into believing that we were meeting his children for supper, as the twins wouldn't be able to make it to Devon with us.

Colin's daughter, Vicky, and I had contacted everyone we could, and then she and her brothers decorated the pub in readiness for their Dad's arrival. I'll be honest and say I was a tad nervous on the day, as when I'd first suggested a party to him, he'd decided against it, but Vicky and I felt it would be a shame to let the date pass without a gathering! Luckily his face was a picture when we walked in and everyone was there, cheering him :) So all in all, a great success, and a wonderful finish to the weekend.

DartmouthColin's actual birthday we spent with his mum, and we had a delicious lunch outdoors in the last of the warm weather. I'd bought most of his presents beforehand, but I had made a photobook for him which was a complete surprise, and he loved it. 

I'd gathered photographs from various members of the family, and then asked each of his children to write a birthday message to their Dad which was included on pages devoted to each of them… being technically inept, it took me far longer to put it all together than it probably should have done, but he was truly delighted with the finished article, so it was worth it :)

As with my 50th, the celebrations were spread out over a few days and Friday saw us getting up at an unbelievably early hour and heading down to Paignton in Devon where we were meeting up with Colin's children, their partners and friends. This particular part of the world is very special to them all as Colin spent many a summer here with his mum and dad, and then took his own children there when they were little. 

The town of DartmouthWe actually had several hours of sunshine that afternoon and decided to take the ferry across to Dartmouth which I thought was lovely. We had lunch outside and, having mooched around for a while, headed back before the heavens opened! We weren't as lucky the following day, and it was unbelievably cold on the front at Torbay, with lashing rain and wind that would take more than a dose of Gaviscon to cure!! 

Having braved it for a short while we made our way to Cockington (the prettiest village in England so the tourist information says!) and had a delicious lunch. I think I slept most of the afternoon, as I felt shattered, and we had planned to see the fireworks in Brixham Harbour. We weren't at all sure if they'd actually go ahead as it was so wet, but the skies cleared and it was a fabulous display, with the famous Golden Hind illuminated beautifully in the coloured lights…

I'm sure our Sunday was spent in much the same way as yours – watching the Flotilla on the Thames and marvelling at the Royal Family's stoicism in standing for four hours in the freezing cold! I'm not surprised Prince Philip got a chill – amazed but relieved it wasn't hypothermia! As for the choir standing in the pouring rain with their make-up running down their faces, I thought they did brilliantly!  

In spite of the weather, it was a pretty impressive spectacle and I wanted to share with you the fact that my friend Ros's husband Chris made all the red velvet swags and festoons on the Royal Barge!  Marvellous eh? :) His company specialise in theatre curtains for all the West End Productions but this was a real honour.  Both he and Ros had tickets to stand on the Millenium Bridge and watch from there, and although I know they were both freezing, they said it was a day they'd always remember. 

By way of a thank you, Chris was given three of the flower posies from the boat and so Ros took them with her to the Hospice the following day, which thrilled everyone. Maybe it was lack of sleep the night before, or possibly several Pimms (!) but I slept for 14 hours and woke up in time to wave the others off, before we ourselves headed home. 

Colin rocking the night awayAnd well he might be 50 now, but Colin rocked the night away with Richard and his band at the weekend, and had virtually the entire pub up dancing in the final set!! Life in the old dog yet eh? :) 

Of course it's been very exciting for QVC this last week, with our first live broadcast from the new studios in Chiswick Park. I had been there before my op, but wanted to be a part of our first day, and I have to say it all looks VERY swish! I'm still sharing a dressing room with Kathy which is good, and although there's a little less room to move around in, the storage space is great!! 

I'm delighted to tell you that I am officially back on air on July 1st – for a Sunday like no other!! You won't believe what they've lined up for you, but you are going to love it… :)

A glimpse of summerBefore I return, Colin and I are taking a short break to Turkey in search of the sun, which I hope may also grace this fair Isle while I'm away. Of course it could mean you will be blessed with 90 degree heat here, while I sit in drizzle on the beach!!  :) 

I'll leave you with this glimpse of summer which I snapped on my walk the other evening… you can't beat England when the sun shines eh? :) Let me know where you're going on your travels, and I'll have some holiday snaps for you next week! 

Stay well and happy, with my love, Ali xx 


  1. Linda June 13, 2012 at 10:26 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali another uplifting blog. Lovely to hear you are enjoying yourself during your latest recovery. Don’t know where you find
    the energy but its great that you are enjoying your time at home
    before you return to QVC. Looking forward to seeing you on air soon. Have a lovely holiday with Colin. Love to you all Linda xx

  2. Julie June 13, 2012 at 12:58 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    So glad you’re managing to get away before you return to work. Turkey will be very hoot0unlike here. I too have had the heating on. I was on the phone to my friend last night and my hands were freezing I just had to go and put the heating on again-I’ve never known a summer like this-so cold and wet!!!
    Lily off on hols next week so hope our “welsh” weather improves! will miss having her but am going to visit them whist they’re away.
    Is sleeping abit better!!!
    Hope you have a lovely time
    Speak soon
    Julie xx Lily xxxxx

  3. Elaine sallis June 13, 2012 at 3:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    how clever of you to keep the family gathering a secret. I am hopeless
    at keeping things like that quiet. I spent Monday at a spa in Cheltenham with my daughter it was lovely to spend a day alone with her before the baby is born. The terrible twos have hit Poppy with full force my docile granddaughter has turned into a devil child overnight and I don’t think I help when I tell my son she is exactly like he was !!!!! I hope you and Colin have a lovely holiday. It will be good to see you back on QVC but make sure you do not rush back too early you need to look after yourself.
    Love Elaine x

  4. Rhona Fenton June 13, 2012 at 5:01 pm -  Reply

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY COLIN!! WOW the celebrations sounded fantastic and a good time had by all:) so lovely to hear what Alison, your children and all your family and friends had lined up for you on your special Birthday:) and as for you Alison I bet your glad the cat’s out the bag now and you can breathe again:) your pictures look amazing and it just sounds like every thing went to plan good Job!! and no stopping there your off on your holiday’s well could you maybe bring some sun and heat back with you please? have a fantastic time the pair off you can’t wait to hear all about it when your back:) love and hug’s Rhona xx

  5. mary morphy June 13, 2012 at 5:20 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali I hope that you are well and recovered from the marvellous 50th birthday celebrations..its good to show the youngsters that the older ones can still ‘get down and groove’ and have the stamina for many days of celebrations; afterall look at the Queen..she was incredible.
    I hope you managed to read my blog written on 4th June as I didnt see a reply from you but I do appreciate you have many many followers b yout don’t want you to think that I had forgotten..reading your blog is now a weekly event which I look forward to greatly and whatever news you are writing about there is always a great balance of humour.
    Half term was a wash out last week, Westgate very wet and the sea very very rough.Kids fed up as all cricket matches were cancelled and as the grass in the garden was a muddy bog that was out of bounds too. I finally planted my hanging baskets (the easy fill ones from QVC with the plastic guards to stop the plants falling out). They are very tough and resiliant which is a blessing as they were swinging round in circles in the 80mph winds but thankfully, baskets and plants still in one piece and now being fed with flower power so hopefully they will be a blooming success. Have a lovely break in Turkey. I went a couple of years ago with my kids and my sister and we loved it. Looking forward to seeing you on screen on July 1st. Much love Mary x

  6. Sue Jennings June 13, 2012 at 5:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali…I am really pleased to hear your visit to Devon went so well (shame about the weather) Happy Birthday to Colin and glad to hear he loved his Birthday celebrations..I watched the final show at Marco Polo House with Julia and Gorgeous Ralph was sad in a way as I know Julia was teary as she has been there from day 1 as have I (would hate to know how much ive spent in that time!!!)I am thrilled to hear of your return in July i will be welcoming you back into my living room as I along with countless others have missed you..I hope you continue to get stronger each day and as ive said before “You are amazing and a true inspiration” im sending more gentle hugs and much love xxxx Sue Jennings

  7. Susan June 13, 2012 at 6:19 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    What a fabulous birthday few days gorgeous Colin had! That’s a beautiful photo of you two. You make such a handsome couple. And what a lot of friends and family Colin has! Lovely so many were there. that is summer isn’t it?! Glad you managed a few lol. Hope you get some sun in Turkey though sure you will. Never been so do report back! Lovely you are sharing with your bezzie mate KT still…I hope you have many happy years ahead again. Will be wonderful to have you back with us again. You are much missed. Oh and as a final note please say to Ros how wonderful a hubbie she has! What a talent! Such a tribute to his work to be chosen for the Royal boat!!
    Have a much deserved break.
    Susan x

  8. Joanna Downey June 13, 2012 at 7:17 pm -  Reply

    Hello Ali and a belated Happy Birthday Colin, Devon is a glorious county and we always spent our Summer holidays there when I was a child. The sky was deepest blue and the Sun shone from dawn till dusk, well that’s how I remember it. Your week sounded busier than the Queen’s! I didn’t watch much of the Jubilee activities but I did see the soaked singers and I couldn’t understand why typical British weather didn’t appear to have been considered. It’s so annoying that we’re having yet another soggy Summer, however, it’s been like this in June many times before so I’m being positive and planning for a super July and August. I think you’re wonderful not blurting out anything about the party, I have a horror of being the one to let the cat out of the bag. I put in my last reply that I was hoping to do lots of gardening over half-term holiday, some hope but, thanks to the Jubilee, this half term is only six weeks long and my major revamp of the top of our garden can wait until the holidays begin. Our Summer trip this year is to Sicily, we both love Italy and the food is perfect for me as I’m a veggie. I’ve been told to either leave my jewellery at home or wear my rings with the stones twisted away from view which is a tad disconcerting. Just as well I’ve got a goodly collection of Diamonique AND a Travelon bag with a mesh reinforced gusset… Have a wonderful time in Turkey and it’ll be lovely to see you back on 1st July which is almost halfway through 2012 but I’ll sign off with Bon Voyage rather than Merry Christmas! Love from Jo x

  9. Gwen Tugwell June 13, 2012 at 7:21 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Lovely to hear from you again, and to know that all is well with
    you, you have been so very brave through all of this,and really are an example to all of us. I hope you enjoy the new home at
    Chiswick, but I shall miss looking at Marco Polo house whenever
    I travel from Brighton to Victoria and wondering what was going on in there, and also peeking at the QVC Garden, but it is all
    progress is’nt.
    Anyway take care, look forward to seeing you again om air, and
    many thanks for your lovely bloggs.

  10. Babs lincsxxx June 13, 2012 at 7:43 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali As always i am mesmorised by your blog. No matter where you go or what you do you have a fantastic time, whatever the weather it makes no difference. You get up and go. You really are to be admired as i surely do.HAPPY BIRTHDAY Colin x I am so happy you are feeling well.I will look forward to seeing you back on screen, it is my birthday 1st July, i am going to DAMONS near LINCOLN for a meal so i hope i’m home to see you. Keep well, take care. Love to you, Colin and all your family. xxxxxx

  11. Janette Galbraith June 13, 2012 at 11:43 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison, so glad to see you’re recovering well after your surgery, and I really hope you enjoy your holiday and feel the better for some sunshine after all the rain recently. I live in Scotland and we’ve escaped the worst of the rain, however it’s not been very hot, so I’m very envious of you escaping to the sun!
    It will be lovely to see you back on-screen on 1st July, and I will certainly watch and admire your tan. You’ve been sorely missed by all your fans, and your enthusiasm and joie de vivre will be a tonic to us all.
    Take care of yourself as a mastectomy is a major op that requires a fairly long convalescence (no lifting of heavy suitcases for instance) and take plenty of rests when your body tells you it’s time – you’ll be fine in jig time as long as you don’t overdo things (god I sound like a doctor, and you’ll have seen enough of them to last a lifetime !).
    Lecture over, normal service resumed – by the way, you looked fab at the wedding (great hat !)
    Lots of love & looking forward to 1st July !!
    Janette xxx

  12. Judith Lennon June 14, 2012 at 11:18 am -  Reply

    Hi Alio
    So glad to hear you enjoyed the weddidng and the lovely party for Colin. I haven’t written before but have followed your progess and road to recovery from day one. Like so many others I just didn’t know what to say to you – then I thought what the heck I can at least let you know another person is thinking of you and will continue to follow your progress. I sincerely hope you can put all these horrible months behind you and continue to enjoy good health. Thoughts and prayers are with you.
    Take care
    love Judithx

  13. Gill Odam June 14, 2012 at 3:57 pm -  Reply

    Lovely to see your photos Ali. I, too, spent many family holidays in Paignton when I was a child, and Dartmouth is so beautiful. I’m so glad that you are progressing well. We are also going to Turkey, for the first time, in a couple of weeks. I hope that you enjoy the warmth and are able to completely relax for a little while before returning to work. Unfortunately I will miss your ‘debut’ on July 1st, with whatever great things are in store, as that’s when we’ll be in Turkey! I hope that it all goes well, but please put yourself first and don’t do too much too fast. Love to you and Colin. Gill x

  14. Carole June 14, 2012 at 11:44 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali – so glad you enjoyed yourself down here in Torbay and the surrounding areas. It is not so good at the moment with lashing rains and the sea. Isn’t Dartmouth and kingswear pretty though?
    I live not far from cockington and when it’s not wet it’s lively to walk through with the dogs. If I’d known you were so close you could have come for a brew!!! Debbie was down here last weekend too.
    Well take care and I’m glad you had a nice time xx

  15. Jacqueline McCormick June 15, 2012 at 4:18 pm -  Reply

    Alison i am new to blogging so be kind with me but i have being wanting to tell you that you are an inspiration to all woman, your bravery, the way you have smiled and the energy show. You should be very proud of yourself. Because of you my mum went to get checked and I am hoping she is all clear but now I know you can fight and that encourages me. So I will be watching to see you on the 1st of July good luck keep on fighting. Lots of love Jacqueline.xxxx

  16. Norma Smithson June 15, 2012 at 5:26 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali hope you and Colin are having a wonderful time in Turkey the weather’s got to be better than good old blighty, the celebrations you planned for Colin’s 50th sounds great, hope you took videao’s of him dancing away, then in the coming years you can bring it out and remind him. Youv’e really got us wondering what you have planned with QVC for July 1st, can’t wait, we’ll be glued to the screen. Hope your recovery Ali is going as planned and you go on now from strength to strength, they say that laughter and happiness are as good a cure as anything and youv’e certainly had some of those what with birthdays, weddings, and holidays well done you much love Norma x

  17. Pam June 15, 2012 at 8:28 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Great to ‘hear’ you sounding so happy.What a wonderful weekend you both had.I hope you will pass on belated birthday wishes to Colin and I hope he’s got a new outfit for Turkey ha ha!Ditch the nurse one! (ref my earlier messages!)Something ‘heroic ‘ may I suggest,as I can tell he’s been your rock.Seriously though, hope you both have a brilliant holiday.
    It’ll be good to see you back on the 1st July.It’ll be cathartic starting work in the new studios, a fresh part of your life starting after the last horrible year.I’ve already put the date on the calendar so ‘mother hen’ can check on you. lol
    Ros must have felt very proud of Chris, as the Royal Barge did look fabulous. Such a shame about the weather but that’s Blighty for you!
    Hope your Mum is well, I’m guessing she’s thrilled at your progress.
    Well going to watch England play now,with the low expectation this time you never know they might win the tournament! Well we can dream can’t we! ha ha
    Looking forward to see your photos of Turkey. My brother has been several times and has taken great shots of sunsets and of the ancient ruins.
    Much love to you all,
    Pam xx

  18. Paula June 15, 2012 at 11:36 pm -  Reply

    You are looking good Alison and, as usual, inspirational.
    Hope you will soon be back on QVC x

  19. Steven June 16, 2012 at 4:27 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Enjoy your holiday and roll on the 1st July. You are an inspiration xx

  20. Debz & Ainzley June 16, 2012 at 8:42 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali and happy belated birthday Colin!!
    What a lovely thing to do for him Ali. You are such a thoughtful person. I can understand your apprehension but bet you were glad it all went so well.
    The weather has been truly awful but I’m glad that you managed to dodge the majority of the monsoons!!
    Ainzley’s vets visit went without incident despite the vet deciding to do another heart scan (of Ainzley’s heart not his!!) which meant more shaving of fur and more sedation. No injuries or mishaps were reported when we picked him up so maybe, just maybe, he is mellowing in his old age? No? Well, we can only hope. Live in hope if we die in vain as my grandad used to say!!
    Just waiting for the results of liver test and heart scan now so fingers crossed.
    Alpa my lovely, I do so hope that you are OK and good luck for your hospital appointment which is 22nd if my memory serves me?
    Una my dear lady. I am so very sorry for all you have been through and all that you continue to have to endure. I can only hope that time can help you come to terms with the things that have happened and that you can eventually find some peace of mind. Stay strong my love. We are all here for you and I know that you are in our prayers.
    Love to Marg, Gail and all the other lovelies in Ali’s Army.
    Lots of love and licks
    Debz & Ainzley (=^-^=) XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  21. Mrs. Christine M. Hindle. June 16, 2012 at 9:57 pm -  Reply

    Hi! Ali, Roll on the 1st July. Missed you on T.V. You are an inspiration to us all. Have a very relaxing Holiday in Turkey. Keep Well and Happy and see you in July. Love Paignton. Sailing on the River Dart, Been to Cockington done all that so can imagine all your surroundings on your trip to Devon. I was thinking about you this last week as some of my friends have been over from Brisbane for eight weeks, back home now after a journey of 33 hours. Happy to be back in the sunshine there. We look forward to seeing you back at QVC. Love to you and your family and Colin of course. Christine Hindle (Mrs) Oswaldtwistle. Lancs.

  22. SUE RADFORD June 20, 2012 at 11:11 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Have a lovely restful and happy holiday Ali. Taking a holiday is such a great tonic isn’t it? Feel so much better after mine – forgot to thank you for your very kind words. Looking forward to reading about your adventures in Turkey – haven’t visited there, but would like to one day.
    Glad Colin enjoyed his surprise birthday party!
    Take care Ali.
    Love from Sue Radford xx

  23. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen June 23, 2012 at 1:02 pm -  Reply

    hi alison enjoy your turkey .i just cameback on friday yesterday from 2 lazy weeks in tenerife.doing nothingf a couple of barbies at my uncke then to his daughter and trhen the local pub.

  24. Kathryn Sheehan June 23, 2012 at 1:38 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Hope you have had a wonderful holiday, i have been to Turkey,we stayed not far from Bodrum in Gumbit. Very lively there but good fun and very hot.
    I did the Race for Life on sunday (17th) a very exciting day and luckily the sun shone on us.I raised just over £200 for Cancer Research,my Medal hangs on my dressing table mirror at home and now looking forward to next years race.Did i hear you say you might do the race later on in the year?. Hope you are keeping well Ali you have been through so much. Take Care and see you soon on air again.
    Lots of Love
    Kathy xx

  25. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:16 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Linda, and thanks for taking the time to write. Yes I have to admit there’s been a fair bit on over the last few weeks, but luckily I’ve had the time off to continue getting better in between! Have just got back from an incredibly hot holiday in Turkey – low 40s all week, and then am back with you on the 1st July – Super Sunday! Hope you’ll be able to join me then, love Ali xx

  26. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:18 pm -  Reply

    Julie, you are sooo right about it being hot in Turkey. The night we arrived the temperatures had risen by 10 degrees and stayed in the low 40s all week! I’ve never perspired so much in my life! :) I’ve had the heating on all day today – not just to warm the house, but to dry the wash LOL. I’m glad that Lily is sleeping a little better and hope that you all enjoy your week in Wales. See you on the 1st July! Love Ali xx

  27. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:20 pm -  Reply

    Elaine, I’m sure that your daughter enjoyed her Spa day with you just as much as you did – especially if Poppy is being such hard work at present! Colin and I just back from a lovely week in Turkey, although it was devilishly hot – even for me! Blog and pics to follow, but back on air next weekend for Super Sunday – do join me! Take care, Love Ali xx

  28. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Rhona, and you’re so right about being relieved now the birthday secret has been had! Like Elaine who wrote just before you, I do find it difficult to keep a secret. I would have loved to bring some of the Turkish sunshine back with me but sadly we waved it goodbye at the airport, and are settling with rain, wind and a pretty chill temperature. I do though have lots of photographic evidence that in other parts of the world it truly is summer :) How lucky am I. I do hope all is good with you and thanks for writing as always, Love Ali xx

  29. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:27 pm -  Reply

    My dear Mary, I will check back as I do remember reading and I thought responding to your lovely long blog – I too look forward to hearing how things are in YOUR life, and truly appreciate the time it takes to write everything in detail :)So sorry that your half term was also a wash out last week – miserable for the kids when they had things planned and difficult to keep them occupied too! Great news on your hanging baskets too, and I can certainly vouch for Richard Jackson’s flower power so you should definitely have a blooming success on your hands! Like you, we loved Turkey, just wish that we could have brought some of the sunshine back with us. See you on the 1st – looking forward to it, love Ali xx

  30. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Sue, and thanks you for your good wishes, I will pass them on to Colin :) Yes I too watched the last hour at Marco Polo House, and thought Jules did a grand job although I know it was a very poignant moment for her.. you too if you’ve been with us that long – thank you!! I am looking forward to being ‘back in your living room’ on Sunday 1st, and I thank you for your kind words, they mean a lot. Take care and keep in touch, love Ali xx

  31. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:34 pm -  Reply

    Susan thank you!! Yes Colin did enjoy all his celebrations, and has also enjoyed the sunshine and clear waters of Turkey. It’s a very pretty country, and I like you had never been before, so I’ll fill you in and stick some pictures up for you in this week’s blog :) I will definitely pass on your kind comments to Ros and Chris and completely agree with you! I hope that life is treating you well and that you will have enjoyed the weekend, Love Ali xx

  32. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:40 pm -  Reply

    Hi Joanna, your memories of Devon are lovely – the summers were always warm when we were young weren’t they :) I agree with you completely that knowing the British weather as we do, a few heaters should have been set up on the Royal boat, and those poor singers should have been under some sort of canopy… all credit though, they still sounded amazing!! I will look forward very much to hearing about Sicily – it’s a part of Italy I have never visited but would very much like to. I took all my Diamonique to Turkey too – best not to risk losing something you may not be able to replace eh? I hope you have a fabulous time and it’s not too hot! Bon Voyage to you too, and thanks for writing, love Ali xx

  33. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:43 pm -  Reply

    Hi Gwen you’re not the only one who will miss Marco Polo House – from the outside our new studios look the same as the other businesses at Chiswick Park, but inside they’re fab!! Thank you for your kind and caring comments – hard to believe this time last year I was still on chemo – seems a long way back now :) I’ll look forward to seeing you on Sunday 1st July – Super Sunday – and I’m sure you’ll love the surprises they’ve lined up for you! Take care too, and thanks for writing, love Ali xx

  34. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:44 pm -  Reply

    Dear Babs, I truly hope you have a very happy birthday – what kind of food do Damons serve? I hope that you will be home in time to see me – I’m on for 7 and 8pm. I am feeling much better and far more rested, so looking forward to coming back and cracking on with the rest of my life :) thank you for your kindness, love Ali xx

  35. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:48 pm -  Reply

    Dear Janette, lovely to hear from you and mightily relieved to hear that somewhere in our wonderful Isle, the sun has been shining – especially as Scotland it seems often has more rain! Yes I will try and maintain my tan until I’m back on air – I’ve sweated buckets to get it! Thanks for your timely advice about recovering from the op – I have been surprised by how tired I have felt, but have definitely turned a corner in the last week. Looking forward to seeing you on the 1st July :) Take care, and thanks for writing, love Ali xx

  36. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:50 pm -  Reply

    Judith I am truly touched by the fact you have written to me, and your kind thoughts and prayers mean a lot. I feel a lot better than I did and the little break in the sunshine has helped the healing spiritually as well as phyically… :) This may be the first time you’ve written, but please don’t make it the last, love Ali xx

  37. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:53 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Gill, and how lovely for you to be heading out to Turkey in a week or so. Do be prepared for huge heat though – it’s been the hottest June they’ve had in 10 years!!! A fan would be a very useful thing to carry – oh and mosquito sprays. Lovely that you too had happy family holidays in Paignton when you were a child – I hope you’ll make some new happy memories on your holiday this year. I will be there when you get back, and so look forward to hearing how your holiday was. Love Ali xx

  38. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:55 pm -  Reply

    Carole that’s a very kind offer!! Next time I’ll let you know and you can put the kettle on :) What a lovely part of the world to actually live in – the rest of us have to contend with just visiting. I hope that you’ve had a great weekend, and have had some dry weather to walk the dogs in! Love Ali xx

  39. alison keenan June 23, 2012 at 9:59 pm -  Reply

    Jacqueline how could I be anything other than kind to you when you’ve taken the trouble to blog me for the first time ever :) Your words are so very appreciated, and I will keep everything crossed that your mum will be fine. I am so glad that she has gone to get checked – anything can be dealt with once they know it’s there, so she’s very much done the right thing. I’ll keep on fighting and am looking forward very much to getting back to my new normal :) Love to you, and please don’t make this the last time you blog will you? :) Love Ali xx

  40. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen June 24, 2012 at 7:37 pm -  Reply

    hi alison hope you are having alovely holiday in turkey.
    i had alovely lazy 2weeks holiday in tenerife back on friday.

  41. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 8:36 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Norma, and I’m sure you won’t be surprised to know that the weather in Turkey was a jolly sight better than here in good old blighty! :) Colin loved his birthday celebrations, and I love your theory that laughter and happiness are as good a cure as anything, which is probably why I’m feeling better than I have for a while. I’m looking forward to seeing you too on July 1st and I’m sure if you’re watching QVC this week you’ll get a clue as to what’s happening on Sunday…. actually I may have to spill the beans in my new blog :) Thank you for writing, and I hope you had a good weekend, love Ali xx

  42. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 8:42 pm -  Reply

    Hi Pam, lovely to hear from you, and yes I have lots of lovely photographs from Turkey which I’ll post up in my new blog tomorrow. We did purchase a new pair of swimming shorts for Colin – not Speedos you’ll be relieved to hear! – and a hat too, which I have to confess to borrowing on more than one occasion as the weather was stonking!! I’ll be popping into work a couple of days this week just to get a feel for the new studios, and then as you say, back to ‘normal’ on Sunday – it’ll be great, and nice to know you’re just the other side of the camera :) Mum’s just back from Jersey and is feeling well and rested, and I hope to see her in a couple of weeks time. I hope too that you are in good health and will have had a enjoyable weekend, with at least some sunshine. With love to you too, Ali xx

  43. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 8:43 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Paula, and thank you for your kind words. I will indeed be back on QVC on the 1st July at 7pm so will look forward to ‘seeing’ you then! Love Ali xx

  44. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 8:43 pm -  Reply

    Steven, long time no hearing from!! :) Hope all good with you, and thanks for your kind words… here’s to the 1st July! Love Ali xx

  45. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 8:54 pm -  Reply

    Dear Debz and Ainzley (=^-^=)! So good to hear from you, and very proud for you that Ainzley behaved so well at the vets – I’m keeping everything crossed for his liver and heart results :) Yes, I was relieved that the party and weekend went so well – I was so spoiled for my 50th with a great many people, including Colin putting in a lot of effort, so it was lovely to give something back. Turkey was good fun, although unbelievably hot, and it must be one of the first times I’ve been away and the weather’s not been brilliant in England! Here’s hoping we all fare better in July eh? I too was thinking of Alpa and her appointment as we made our way back home, and hope very much that all went well. Do you have a holiday planned this year – who looks after Ainzley if you go away ?? I very much hope that all is well with you, and that you had some sunshine over the weekend. Thanks for always keeping in touch – it’s lovely to think it’s been a couple of years now that we’ve been writing to each other :) Take care, love Ali xx

  46. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 9:00 pm -  Reply

    Christine, great to hear that you too have enjoyed special times in Paignton and Cockington – sailing on the River Dart sounds wonderful! I’m sure it must have been a real treat for you to see your friends from Brisbane, and I’m certain you’ll miss them now they’ve gone back. I doubt though that they’ve ever seen as much rain as we’ve had here this June!! Take care, and thanks for writing. ‘See’ you on the 1st July, love Ali xx

  47. alison keenan June 24, 2012 at 9:08 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Sue, just wanted to let you know that we did indeed have a restful holiday, and I feel better than I have done in ages :) I am glad that your holiday had the same result and gave you some respite from the trying times you’ve been through recently… I’m planning to post my pictures and memories of Turkey on the blog tomorrow, so it’ll be good to share them with you. Take care, love Ali xxx

  48. Julie Anderson June 30, 2012 at 7:59 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    I have been trying to comment and haven’t been able to. Oh Ali, how scary all that was for you, as if you haven’t been through enough, I have complete admiration for you and all you have come through, you are so strong and inspirational. Glad the wedding all went well and that you are having a good holiday. I continue to send you my love and prayers as I have always done.
    You take care and continue to get well.
    your friend,

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